On hate and prejudice

Like the flower, life is short, so why waste it on bigots?

I daily work alongside people who suffer prejudice and hate based on religion, gender, race or some other quality. It was only in recent days that I personally suffered such prejudice based upon the equation you are X, and therefore you are unworthy of Y. X being the quality such as religion, and Y being the right or liberty that all in society enjoy, but is denied to the target of the prejudice based upon X. Such hatred can be something minor such as denying an individual of their opinion on a matter because of X; all the way to people being exterminated in a gas chamber for being a Jew.

Upon being asked how they defined prejudice in a youth conference in the 1950’s, Raul Contreras, aged 15 at the time, said:

When a person loses track of the dignity of the human soul and begins to judge others not on the basis of their being persons, but on the basis of race, creed, economic status, that is prejudice.

Raul Contreras

In my personal exprience of prejudice, where I, as a human soul, was dismissed out of existence based upon X; I was deeply distressed at this first ever pure denial of my existence as a human being by two bigots. One feels tainted, humiliated, violated and justly angry at such a situation, as I did.

One finds that even if one was to challenge such bigots by reason of pointing out the prejudice and the impacts of such prejudice, the bigots lack empathy, compassion or insight to see that point of view. Indeed, one suffers invalidation, denial and threats. It is an unlikely outcome that a bigot will ever be illuminated as to the wrong and injustice of their prejudice.

How does one deal with such bigots? Well, if I have used reason and provided the bigot with the opportunity of enlightenment, and failed, it is time to move on. The nature of the blind bigot is they are doomed to repeat their harmful activity again and again; so the only good action is to remove them from the life of the self. Life is too short to host bigots, who bring to the table nothing but poison, thus it is a case of mitigating harm, or removing them from being an influence; to give the bigot no further opportunity to bring suffering to the life of the self.

6 thoughts on “On hate and prejudice

  1. You are so correct that reason will not convert a prejudiced person. Well, obviously, because if they were reasonable and logical to begin with, they wouldn’t have the prejudice! One thing I decided, though, and this was particularly urgent to me during the Trump years. I decided that I would never let an incident of bigoted commentary or prejudice pass without speaking up. Rationally, not angrily, (well, most of the time anyway), but definitely stating that I wasn’t party to those beliefs. Silence signals agreement, after all. I realized that justice is not the norm; empathy and attempting to understand were not the norm: you have to stand up for these things all the time or risk losing them through apathy. That’s what the power hungry are counting on, after all. Ave Satanas.

    1. “reason will not convert a prejudiced person. Well, obviously, because if they were reasonable and logical to begin with, they wouldn’t have the prejudice!”

      You write as though you believe that some people (whom I will refer to as “baddies”) have prejudices, but that others (to whom I shall refer as “goodies”), such as yourself, don’t. You also reveal that you believe that prejudice that you recognise in others (rather than any prejudice in yourself, which you do not recognise if there is any) is due to an incapacity for reason and logic n the part of the baddies, of which you, as a goodie, are perfectly capable. You believe that those whom you identify what you recognise as prejudiced baddies are therefore impossible to persuade to abandon their prejudices, because of this inherent inferiority onf baddies to reasonable, logical goodies like yourself.

      So far so good?

      I put it to you that all those beliefs on your part and on the part of other goodies amount to prejudices of yours, which you do not recognise as prejudices, because (just like baddies with prejudices you do recognise, against whom you are unknowingly prejudiced) you consider your good prejudices to be universal truths that anybody with the ability to reason and to use logic would already believe.

      “Silence signals agreement”

      You’ve never posted a comment on my blog, or a reply to any of my tweets. May I take it that you therefore agree with everything I have written on the blog, or in my tweets? It would be most remiss of you to give the impression that you agreed with me wholeheartedly about everything, just because you were too apathetic to be bothered to tell me and the rest of the world that you disagreed with this or that which I had said, if it expressed a typical baddie prejudice.

      1. John. Baby. Did you forget to eat your Wheaties this morning?

        You don’t know me from Adam, including the contents of my brain, my ethics, my personality, my prejudices or beliefs, the context of my comment, my age (66), or the intended tone or the assumptions or the degree of my humility, high or low, or my degree of self-awareness, in fact sweet diddley-squat, but it seems as though I served as a much-needed lightning rod for a lot of your pent-up bile at – and here I go again – someone or something. (Well, obviously! LOL!)

        It’s scary to think about what your day might have been like had you not seen my comment. Yikes! Let’s just not go there! Maybe I saved you from, who knows, road rage leading to a traffic accident, or a horrible fight with your spouse! Anyway, I’m guessing you’re waaaaay more relaxed now, which, let’s face it, can only be a good thing, right? .

        Happy to have been of service, and though I must regretfully take my leave, I now blow in your direction what MAY sound like a kiss.

      2. I held up a mirror, for you to see your own reflection. You imagined that the reflection you saw was me, whom you do not know from Adam, except insofar as we can each know the other to a limited extent, by reading one another’s words. I took your words seriously. You seem not to have given mine any thought at all.

        To write, “reason will not convert a prejudiced person”, is to express a quite startling prejudice, against an imaginary, generic opponent, one who is (you went on to insinuate) illogical and unreasonable. I do not ask myself whether I have prejudices at all, as you imagine you haven’t. I ask myself what my prejudices might be. As your senior in years (68), I commend this approach to you. It is safer than dividing the world into two groups, those whom one considers to have prejudices because they are unreasonable and illogical people by nature, and those who (like oneself) one considers have no prejudices, because they were born into the logical and reasonable of the two warring tribes. Does this not seem logical and reasonable?

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